Competitive Edge

COMPETITION for places will be higher than ever this season as manager Jody Bevan seeks to instil a culture of commitment and competition at Cinder Lane.

The Reds are just over a week away from the start of the new 2018/19 season and the boss is pleased with the results of a busy summer of recruitment.

“I have tried to create a squad of around 22 players whereby I have always got two players available for any one position. I am pleased to say that nearly all of the squad have now signed on for the season. I hope to finalise the remaining two or three in the next 48 hours.

“It’s vital that there is competition for places so that every single player is on his toes and knows that they can’t drop their standards otherwise somebody else will take their place.”

The busy Hellenic Premier Division season could see as many as eight fixtures in the opening month of August, with availability and flexibility of the squad set to be key.

“It’s going to be a delicate balance to keep everybody happy but as I always state this is a squad game nowadays and the players not included in the starting 11 are equally important as those starting. We win as a squad and lose as a squad.

“There is definitely a much more positive vibe in the camp which I am desperate to keep and hopefully enhance. Once the signings are complete, we can then concentrate on being as well prepared as possible for the opening game of the season at home to Wantage,” he added.

“It’s going to be a very tough opener against one of the teams that are no doubt hoping to be contenders for the title but I know now that we are in pretty good shape. I don’t want to make any predictions for the league this season other than to say we will be competitive from the off and the aim is to show considerable improvement on what we achieved last season.

“Reidy, Shaun and I will prepare the players as best as we can with the sole aim of looking to win every game that we play throughout the season.”

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